Much stronger than during the First Cold War: Why is NATO so irrational today?

By Jan Oberg The third article in the TFF series on The New Cold War We are witnessing a remarkable increase in tension between the US/NATO and Russia these years – and it can not only be explained by whatever we choose to think happened in Ukraine and Crimea. We find a totally new effort on both sides to use social and other media to tell how dangerous “they” are to “us”. There is a clear tendency to “fearology” – to instill fear in the citizens on both sides about the capabilities and intentions of the other side. We find deeply concerned articles about the possibility of war between the two parties – a quarter of a century after the Berlin Wall tumbled. Why is the new tension rising in Europe between US/NATO and Russia so manifestly dangerous and – with the exception of the Cuban Missile Crisis worse than during the First Cold War? On a series of indicators, the political Western world – US/NATO/EU and Christian (Orthodox, Protestant, Catholic with sects) – is becoming weak relative to other players in the global society. The West has engaged in a series of wars that turned into very costly fiascos – from what followed from Sykes-Picot which turned 100 in May 2016 over Vietnam to the destruction of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria. The West is still the largest economic bloc and the 28 NATO members cover about 70% of […]

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If the EU becomes a criminal Union some don’t want you to know

For instance EU and other Western mainstream media. But we are getting out! The European Union is about to sign an agreement with non-EU Turkey to get rid of a large part of its refugees – by paying around € 6 bn to Turkey. Amnesty International and many others have pointed out – in strong words – that this agreement violates basic provisions of international law and human rights norms. This is the text I wrote on March 16 in TFF PressInfo # 367. As far as I’ve been able to check, no mainstream Western media has made any use of this text, let alone contacted me for comments. Instead it has been circulated widely by social media, spread to the rest of the world by the excellent Human Wrongs Watch, by the largest alternative news agency, International Press Service (also in Spanish) and I had a chance to refer to it on Russia Today (see another post here on my site) with between 600 and 700 million viewers. The leading alternative Counterpunch in the U.S. featured it too. And if you google – “Will the EU become a criminal Union tomorrow – you’ll see it featured also in Equador, in Canada by Global Research, etc. The worldwide PressEnza Hongkong took it. So did the Other News. Information that markets eliminate. The WN – World News Network. There are many others, of course. And more to come, surely. Who is not using such […]

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NATO outdated – Abolish war

Commenting on NATO S-G Jens Stoltenberg’s wish for dialogue with Russia – a bit odd after all the other provocative initiatives he has spearheaded the last good year or so. I felt like saying something more general about this outdated paradigm – and why it is dangerous for us all – referring also to the Russell-Einstein Manifesto of 1955. You may also see it as my statement countering the NATO Annual 2015 Report which lacks every intellectualism, theoretical/conceptual clarity, empathy, peace thinking and – naively – equates military  build-up with ‘security’.

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The links between refugees and war

It’s our wars, stupid! A short interview on Russia Today about Europe’s woefully inadequate understanding of why refugees come here. Towards a solution: Deal with conflicts early and by peaceful means, criminalise arms trade and abolish war and you’ve solved most of the world’s refugee problems! Interview on YouTube with RT International (700 million viewers worldwide and to be broadcast repeatedly on April 20, 2015).

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If so, let the U.S. isolate itself

Iran says nuclear deal depends on lifting of sanctions | Reuters This is a timely reminder to those who believe the Iran nuclear deal can be reduced to and hinges upon the deal between Congress and Obama. Says Iranian President Rouhani: “We are in talks with the major powers and not with the Congress,” Rouhani said. I draw three conclusions: 1. If there will be no deal, the main reason is the US and Israel. 2. The other 4P+1 countries should let the U.S. isolate itself and sign the deal with Iran. Everybody should then normalise relations with Iran and speed up all kinds of co-operation ASAP. 3. The punishment of the Iranian people has been unjustifiable from Day One and their suffering must end.

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Comment to Israel’s defence minister in Washington Post

Israel’s defence minister Moshe Ya’alon writes in Washington Post under the headline “Current Iran framework will make war more likely” When I wrote my comment there were already more than 1100 comments – so here it is: “Israel’s defence minister is an echo of PM Netanyahu. Nothing new, Israel’s official views are well-known, beamed out a thousand times more effectively than Iran’s to the world, not the least thanks to leading U.S. free and plural media. What makes you, Mr. Ya’alon, think that this whole discussion can go on forever as if Israel was not the main problem because of its military/militarism and its nuclear weapons? Your military expenditures are about the same as Iran’s, a country with about 10 times more people to defend. While you continue to hold occupied territory and fight wars for it – and you are a military man who mentions what he has been forced to do during war – you omit mention of the fact that Iran has not invaded anyone for more than 200 years. Israel, sadly, pursues law-defying policies and decades long ethnic cleansing instead of taking one step in the direction of trying to live together in a democracy-for-all state. You’ve got more power to change Israel’s policies than most Israelis. Morally – and I take you to be a moral man – you cannot contribute to punishing 80 million people (sanction, bombing threats, agents, propaganda, etc) who have done […]

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Iran nuclear deal – a road to peace

Jan Oberg commenting on Iranian President Rouhani: “Tehran abides by commitments, if P5 1 fulfills promises” – YouTube/PressTV http://ow.ly/LbX3d In spite of the deal’s negative sides, Iran has chosen peace to the benefit of the world. In that perspective it is much more than a nuclear deal, it’s – potentially – a road to peace.

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P1 Debats politiske tilrettelæggelse omkring missilforsvaret

De fleste mennesker, der lytter til radio eller ser TV, tænker næppe så meget over hvad der også kunne være foregået og med hvilke deltagere. De ser et færdigt produkt, ikke processen – og de tager, nok så forståeligt, stilling til det de ser og hører snarere end til noget andet, de i en forestillingsverden kunne have set eller hørt. Med de sociale medier kan man nu formidle informationer i rollen som mediemenneske og fortælle hvordan det også går til sådan bag kulisserne. Måske lyttede du til P1 Debat på Danmarks Radio nu idag kl 12:15-13:00 om missilskjoldet og den russiske ambassadørs åbne brev? I så fald kan kopien herunder af min korrespondence med P1 Debats redaktør Anne Henderson måske have din interesse. Den dokumenterer at jeg skriftligt blev inviteret til at deltage per telefon, at jeg sagde ja tak men under forudsætning af visse rammebetingelser kunne opfyldes gennem videre samtale – herunder a) at der blev mulighed for at forklare at missilforsvaret kan ses som en del af en større amerikansk atomkrigs-strategi og b) at der må være fair play med mig siddende udenfor studiet specielt når programmet efter min opfattelse allerede da er planlagt med en holdningsmæssig slagside. Den viser endvidere at der gik næsten et døgn inden Hendersons svarer og så pludselig mener at det dér med at sidde på en telefon medførte at man har besluttet at jeg alligevel ikke skal deltage. Vel, læs selv nedenfor.

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EU agrees on sanctions on Russia – but what about peace?

EU agrees Russia sanctions to stay until Ukraine peace terms met (Reuters). Exactly as expected. If the EU can make a conflict-resolution mistake, rest assured that it will! Minsk is not a peace agreement – but at Reuters they don’t know the difference between a ceasefire and a peace agreement. The looming catastrophe is exactly that there is no follow-up to Minsk II, no process for conflict-resolution, the future structure of Ukraine, nothing on UN peacekeeping, reconciliation, confidence-building and peace. These sanction are the only known follow-up and only signaling: We don’t trust you damn Russians! NATO knows only military saber-rattling, EU only sanctions – nobody knows peace. What a Europe! What a danger to all of us having to live with the long-term consequences of such peace illiteracy! I’ve written a longer piece on what I believe would be a much safer policy – with absolutely no indications of an interest from the local or international media.

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Olof Palme – murdered today 29 years

Olof Palme – murdered today 29 years ago • Wikipedia A politician who willed a better society, to whom politics was a calling – working for justice, international law, nuclear disarmament, against big countries bullying small countries, a person who made Sweden stand ut. Then. And it was the Palme Commission on Common Security that broke the ice towards the end of the Cold War with the idea that we can only be sure together with the other side, not against the other side. That was 1982. As relevant today as then – think Ukraine! I met him twice – the first time to criticise him for Swedish arms exports. The second for an hour-long lunch in which he constantly asked me questions about peace, nonviolence, peace research and alternative defence – and I did not get a chance to ask him a single of all the questions I had prepared… A rare combination of intellectualism and curiosity, vision and passion, self-confidence and humility – so sadly missed in today’s political world.

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P1 Debat gør det igen

P1 Debat: Hvad nytter krigen (den gør altså nytte) – gør det igen – som om det var en oprigtig holdning til fred – og spørger om krigen kan være en vej til fred. Her sidder så en soldat og en war studies professor på den en side og Lene Junker på den anden side, der skal forklare freden. Disse programmer – som heldagsprogrammet for nyligt, som Debatten, Deadline etc – handler aldrig om fred, de handler udelukkende om krigen. Og ikke ét ord om Vestverdens historie i konfliktområderne eller bare et forsøg på at forstå hvor nogen kan have problemer med Sten Rynnings “liberale” verdensorden. Lene gør det lavmælt og sagligt trods den utaknemmelig opgave. Men hold da op hvor har vi langt igen når et seriøst program som dette ikke kan komme på bedre spørgsmål og vinkler. Hvornår får vi skabt en debat på Facebook og andre sociale midler og som samfundsborgere lave en kampanje for alternativer og påvirke medierne til ikke altid at tage udgangspunkt i krigen – for eller imod. For hver gang er det eneste vi ikke kommer frem til jo freden og dens muligheder. PS Og så gider jeg ikke engang kommentere Sten Rynnings ufrivilligt komiske og uvidenhedsbaserede påstand at krigsstudier er videnskab mens fredsforskning (med reference til mig) er politik. Men naturligvis ønsker P1 Debat ikke lade mig deltage i en sådan diskussion. Og dét er politik.

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